Step 1: Make sure that you have chosen the best meal option available – the Chicken McNuggets. All other nuggets pale in comparison to these reconstituted and gloriously golden chunks, and McDonalds has yet to make anything which can capture the nuggety taste sensation that was their creative culinary peak. Not since the McNugget has anyone been able to capture the full taste of reformed chicken so that it tastes like a shimmering spice explosion, yet maintain their crisp exterior and oh-so-soft interior. The burgers are coated in some form of strange thing plastic clingfilm, the cheeseburgers are hampered by the way the burger is always more cooked that the cheese, while the bun is still cold, and the fish-fingers take up to three months each for them to cook. McNuggets are your only way forward. Take fries with it, as opposed to carrot sticks. It may be tempting to go for the orange bit of vegetable over the yellow sticks of dubious origin, but this temptress is a lying minx who will lead you to ruin. The carrot sticks are horrific, the chips are passable. You can choose whichever drink you like.
Step 2: Make sure that you have gathered together at least three pots of ketchup. These will be essential – almost every bite you take requires ketchup. At some point.
Step 3: Read the outside for a few minutes, taking part in whatever quizzes may be emblazoned around the sides. If you are struggling for answers, then do not fear; they are printed on the underside of the box. Don’t use a pen to answer anything or solve the mazes, because you might want to try them again at a later date. Open the box.
Step 4: Take out everything, including the toy. Do not open the toy. Instead look at it and try to figure out what movable parts it has, and if it could make a good weapon in any way. Arrange napkins across your tray, and drop all the chips onto them, so that they don’t touch the surface proper. You never know what might have happened on those trays. The chicken McNuggets should stay in their own separate box: do not open them at this point. This is vital. You are allowed to sip your drink, but no more than a few single sips are allowed at any one point. You’ll need to conserve your rations of the delicious fruity waterfall of joy until towards the end.
Step 5: Eat the fries. All of them. You are allowed to empty out all of the first pot (of three, remember) of ketchup alongside the fries. The best way to eat the chips is to take out the longer ones first and devour them mercilessly, snapping off their heads and biting them in half, before turning your ravenous attention towards the weaker fries. Take them out in threes and fours, drowning them in ketchup and blinding them before sending them to join their lanky friends. If you’re with a friend (which… we hope you are) then talk to them incessantly. You only get so many years in a life, and it would be a shame not to make the most of them. Tell them about your favourite colour, how you worry about the fact you haven’t yet seen ‘Blade Runner’, or debate with reasoned points how likely you consider it to be that the girl/boy behind the counter harbours a slight crush on you. Make the most of your years. Eat the fries. Once they are gone, shove the packaging back inside the Happy Meal Box.
Step 6: Ignore the outside world. Shut everything out; because you are about to embark upon a deeply personal eating experience, one that does not come along every day.
Step 7: The McNuggets. I won't help you with this, but don't panic. When the time comes... you’ll know what to do.
Step 8: Once the McNuggets are gone, you’ll return to reality and realise that you’ve finished the ketchup, except for one little streak along the side of one of the tubs. Take your finger and gather this remaining reminder of the ketchup and use the stickiness of the condiment to gather all the last few crumbs of McNugget together on your finger. Then suck that finger like there’s no tomorrow! Do it. If you wish, at this point you can take the box for the nuggets and tilt it so any of the remaining buds of crumby taste and goodness fall into your waiting mouth. This is not frowned upon, but at the same time is inadvisable if you have chosen to take a date to McDonalds.
Step 9: Rip the lid off the drink. Literally – rip it. Tear that sucker off and gaze at the refreshing, fizzing drink, of which at least half should still remain. Then pick up the cup and start draining it so that you get a headache from the cold, much like when you down icecream too quickly. Let the pain come. You can take as many swigs as you wish, but do not take your time. Get rid of the drink as quickly as possible. If you have a friend/date with you, then maintain a knowing eye contact with them for the duration of the experience.
Step 10: Eat the ice cubes… one at a time.
And you’re done. Of course, if you want a real delicious meal which is healthy and has those low, low prices that you love, then go to Subways. Go on: treat yourself!